Aug 24, 2023 - Climate

Columbus area under extreme heat watch today

A computer model of the U.S. map showing a heat dome across the Central states.

A computer model depiction of the historic intensity of the heat dome across the Central U.S. Image: Tomer Burg/

Did you think the arrival of football season and pumpkin-spice everythings meant fall weather was around the corner?

Sweat level: Think again. Central Ohio is under an excessive heat watch Thursday between noon-9pm, per the National Weather Service.

  • Expect temperatures up to 96 degrees and a heat index reaching up to 110.
  • It'll be very warm again Friday, with temps cooling down to highs in the 80s this weekend.

The big picture: A sweltering, stagnant air mass is currently draped across the entire Central U.S., resulting in this extreme "heat dome," Axios' Andrew Freedman writes.

  • As of Wednesday afternoon, about 150 million people were under extreme heat alerts from Chicago to New Orleans.

State of play: The high temps come as students across the region are headed back to school and athletic teams take the field.

  • Columbus City Schools tells us they'll follow state guidelines when it comes to outdoor practice and game safety.

Meanwhile: Columbus Metropolitan Library branches and community center locations open at 9am as cooling centers.

Yes, but: If you're looking to take a dip, you might have to wait a few days.


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